A petition posted this past weekend pushing to get a Confederate statue replaced with a Chadwick Boseman memorial has generated more than 15,000 signatures. The proposed statue swap would occur in Anderson, South Carolina, the hometown of Boseman.
The star of Black Panther, Marshall, and many other films passed away on Friday due to colon cancer. He was 43.
“Mr. Boseman is without question an American treasure and his accolades go on and on. It is only fitting that his work is honored in the same place that birthed him,” says the petition. “As fellow citizens go about their day they should have a face that sees all people as equal. That sees all citizens regardless of outward appearance as a member of the Anderson community.”
Local news outlets say that the monument being targeted was put up in 1902. It was erected in front of a courthouse, and shows a soldier on a platform. Its inscription reportedly says, in part, “The world shall yet decide, in truth's clear, far-off light, that the soldiers who wore the gray, and died with Lee, were in the right."
In June the existing statue was vandalized. The city's mayor, Democrat Terence Roberts, condemned the vandalism but also stated an intent to work with officials on a resolution regarding what to do with the monument.
As for more concrete news on the subject of a local tribute to Boseman, TMZ reports that city officials have plans for both the immediate, as well as the more distant, future.
Also citing Roberts, TMZ says the city will hold a get-together this week. Though details are vague for now, they also have the intent to put up a publicly displayed tribute to him at some point down the road.
The more immediate celebration will consist of a remembrance to take place on Thursday at an outdoor amphitheater. Three guest speakers will be there, specifically the mayor, a pastor, and an ex-classmate. After that they'll show Black Panther.
The city says that they'll take COVID-related precautions by cutting the amphitheater's max capacity in half (from 10,000 to 5,000), and that they'll put into place procedures regarding social distancing and the wearing of masks.